Uber Comes To Luxembourg In The Passenger Seat Of WEBTAXI

From left to right: Laurent Slits, director at Uber and Emile Weber, board member of WEBTAXI (Photo © Frank Weber)

After years of discussions, Uber has finally found a way onto the roads of the Grand Duchy by partnering with emile weber’s WEBTAXI. Beginning mid-June, those in need of taxis will be able to book WEBTAXI cars through the Uber app. Laurent Slits, director at Uber, and Emile Weber, board member of WEBTAXI, tell us more about the ambitions of this new collaboration and whether Uber Eats is on the horizon yet.

What can you tell me about the details of this new collaboration?

Laurent Slits (Uber): Basically the Uber app, which was previously not available for riders in Luxembourg, will now be available so that users can be matched with a driver. These drivers will be WEBTAXI drivers. The value for Uber is that we will get access to a lot of good quality drivers to service our riders and what the drivers get in return is more demand from a demographic that mainly was harder to approach (e.g.: tourists and international people who might have not heard about WEBTAXI). 

Emile Weber (WEBTAXI): We will still keep our application, we will keep the options to make phone calls as well as the online platform but in addition to all of this, it will be possible to use the Uber application. Our drivers will have WEBTAXI and Uber courses and the users can freely choose which application they want to use. 

What incentives will users have to use one application over another?

Laurent: The question of pricing is still something we need to discuss. This is still work that needs to happen, but of course, our ambition is to be attractive on the Luxembourg market. 

Emile: We always try to have the most competitive price but WEBTAXI has a different approach to pricing than Uber. Uber uses dynamic pricing and we use stable pricing, so that is all we can say for now.

It’s my understanding that some of the hurdles which Uber had to overcome to enter the Luxembourg market were social security coverage and taxi licenses for its drivers. Is this something that the new partnership has solved?

Laurent: Drivers’ situations will not change except for the fact that they will have access to one additional source of income. WEBTAXI will also continue to do the onboarding process for the drivers, that’s the good thing about having a local established partner, they know what to look out for and can help us ensure that we are always fully compliant with Luxembourg law.

How many new drivers do you hope this new partnership will bring to the table?

Laurent: Our ambition is that it goes so well that the demand really goes so high that WEBTAXI’s biggest problem will be to find more drivers. That is the perfect storm when demand and the number of drivers go hand in hand, so this is what we hope for. 

Emile: The ambition is to have more drivers, we have not made any estimations about how many yet. But the partnership is a win for the taxi market because every driver with a license, not only the WEBTAXI drivers can join the ranks and join on the Uber application. 

Wolt has recently joined the Luxembourg food delivery market. Will Uber Eats be joining the race now that Uber is set to make its mark in Luxembourg?

Laurent: To be clear, what we’re discussing is the launch of the Uber Rides app together with WEBTAXI and our expansion to Luxembourg. Uber Eats is always looking to expand and to do that in the right way. But to be very frank I’m responsible for mobility and have no details on the planning for launching on the Luxembourg market. 

What concrete goals do you hope to achieve by the end of 2024?

Laurent: We hope that the Uber brand will bring more demand to the table and that then the supply of drivers will follow, thereby creating the perfect storm. Of course, this is always hard to predict but I am fully confident that Luxembourg has all the characteristics to be a successful place to launch, especially with WEBTAXI, such a respected and well-established brand.

Emile: We are confident that this is an important opportunity and that our numbers will continue to rise. Let’s see what the future holds.

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